Principal Dancers

Sarah Van Patten

Diana Dollar Knowles Principal Dancer

Sarah Van Patten

Sarah Van Patten (© David Allen)

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Boston, Massachusetts

Company Membership:

Joined as a soloist in 2002.
Promoted to principal dancer in 2007.
Appointed Diana Dollar Knowles Principal Dancer in 2013.

Sarah Van Patten, from Boston, Massachusetts, trained at Ballet Workshop of New England with Jacqueline Cronsberg. She danced with Massachusetts Youth Ballet and the Royal Danish Ballet before joining San Francisco Ballet as a soloist in 2002; she was promoted to principal dancer in 2007.

Van Patten has danced major roles in many full-length ballets, including Giselle and Myrtha in Tomasson’s Giselle; Grand Pas de Deux Ballerina, Sugar Plum Fairy, and Queen of the Snow in Tomasson’s Nutcracker; Juliet in Tomasson’s Romeo & Juliet; Lilac Fairy in Tomasson’s The Sleeping Beauty; Odette/Odile in Tomasson’s Swan Lake; Mercedes and Queen of the Driads in Tomasson/Possokhov’s Don Quixote; Dawn and War and Discord in Balanchine’s Coppélia; Tatiana in Cranko’s Onegin; The Mermaid and Princess in Neumeier’s The Little Mermaid; and Cinderella and Stepsister Edwina in Wheeldon’s Cinderella. She created roles in Caniparoli’s Double Stop; Elo’s Double Evil; Morris’ Joyride; McGregor’s Borderlands; Page’s Guide to Strange Places; Ratmansky’s From Foreign Lands; Tomasson’s The Fifth Season, Bagatelles, and Trio; and Wheeldon’s Within the Golden Hour, among others.

Her repertory includes Balanchine’s Allegro Brillante, Apollo, Brahms-Schoenberg Quartet, “Diamonds,” Divertimento No. 15, “Emeralds,” The Four Temperaments, Scotch Symphony, Serenade, Stravinsky Violin Concerto, Symphony in C, Symphony in Three Movements, and Who Cares?; Ashton’s Symphonic Variations; Caniparoli’s Ibsen’s House, Lambarena, and No Other; Liang’s Symphonic Dances; Lifar’s Suite en Blanc; MacMillan’s Elite Syncopations and Winter Dreams; van Manen’s Variations for Two Couples; McGregor’s Chroma; de Mille’s Rodeo; Morris’ A Garden, Drink to Me Only With Thine Eyes, Maelstrom, Pacific, and Sandpaper Ballet; Mrozewski’s Concordia; Possokhov’s Firebird, Fusion, and Reflections; Nureyev’s Raymonda—Act III; Ratmansky’s Le Carnival des Animaux, Russian Seasons, Shostakovich Trilogy (Chamber Symphony and Symphony #9), and Souvenir d’un lieu cher; Robbins’ Afternoon of a Faun, The Concert, Dances at a Gathering (Mauve), Dybbuk, Fancy Free, In the Night, and Opus 19/The Dreamer; Scarlett’s Hummingbird; Tomasson’s 7 for Eight, Caprice, Criss-Cross, Nanna’s Lied, Blue Rose, On Common Ground, Le Quattro Stagioni, and Prism; Tudor’s Jardin aux Lilas; Wheeldon’s After the Rain pas de deux, Carousel (A Dance), Ghosts, Rush, and Quaternary; and Zanella’s Underskin.

Van Patten performed with Tiit Helimets and Company on a tour to Estonia in 2011, with Damian Smith and other San Francisco Ballet dancers in Australia in 2010, and with M & Company in Cologne, Germany, in 2010, among other appearances.

She received an Isadora Duncan Dance Special Award for “Many Faces of Giselle” in 2012 and an Isadora Duncan Award for Best Ensemble Performance in 2009. She was awarded Denmark’s New Talent Prize as an outstanding apprentice for the Royal Danish Ballet in 2001, and she received the Chautauqua Festival Artistic Director’s Award in 1997. 

2016 Nutcracker Pre-Sale
San Francisco Ballet in Tomasson's Nutcracker. (© Erik Tomasson)

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